Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
Just moments after celebrating a double century of winners for the season Victoria’s premier horseman Peter Moody was rewarded with victory number 201 at Caulfield on Saturday with Monkstone emerging as a genuine Caulfield Guineas 2013 contender this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival.
Going out as the odds-on favourite in the first, rising three-year-old Fastnet Rock colt Monkstone broke their maiden status at career start number two saluting for the punters in the $80,000 Download the Sportingbet App Handicap (1200m).
Their debut run a fortnight ago saw them run a brave second to Lord Of The Sky at the same track and on Saturday the enjoyed the step up to 1200m.
Ridden by Vlad Duric for the first time Monkstone was a little slow out of the inside alley but eventually moved up to settle third on the fence.
From there they did it easy sitting just off the leader heading towards the turn before storming home on the straight to put two and a half lengths on the Hawkes-trained runner-up Sportegic ($21) with Salute To Judge ($12) in third.
“He did the same thing at the start the other day (missing the start), I was probably lucky that he drew barrier one so that I was able to get into a nice position,” Duric said.
“It was just a matter of whether I could get to the outside of runners in the straight and when he did he was very impressive.”
It was a good result for connections, including Coolmore and Emmaroo Bloodstock, who paid $1 million for Monstone as a yearling and who have high expectations about their coming spring prep.
“He’s a million dollar horse with a hell of a pedigree, owned by a breeding conglomerate like Coolmore so he’ll be aimed at all the big races in the spring and I think that’s where his ability dictates that he goes too,” Moody said.
Moody is confident Monkstone will continue to rise through the ranks over the coming months as they’re stepped up in distance with their grand final goal set as the $1 million Group 1 The Beck Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 12.
“He’s a nice type,” the master trainer said.
“He’s a laid-back horse with a great attitude but he’s probably a bit too relaxed.
“He hasn’t travelled in a race yet, it might be pretty interesting once we can step him up to 1400-1600 metres because with horses who can win off the bridle, you can’t wait to get them to learn how to travel in a race because they traditionally finish off a lot better.
“He’ll duck off to the water-walker for a couple of weeks now and we’ll come back and run him through the Caulfield Guineas preludes.”
Their last run before the 2013 Caulfield Guineas will be in the $175,000 Group 3 The Beck Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) on September 29.
The horse’s winning hoop from the weekend Duric also rated Monkstone a big chance in the Guineas as they went up to the mile.
“He’s a lovely relaxed colt; he’ll definitely get over further and he has got a bright future,” he said.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au for all the latest on the Caulfield Guineas this year including horses heading towards the classic three-year-olds’ showdown as well as early markets once released at bookmaker.com.au.
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